Serena Spring (This Week’s Movies)

spring

Lou Taylor Pucci, Nadia Hilker: Spring

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

Serena. “Simply a one-off botch.” (In case of Herald paywall, Seattle Weekly version here.)

Spring. “What if you were watching one of those walking-and-talking indie romances in the style of Richard Linklater’s Before series, and it suddenly turned into a horror flick?” (Weekly version here.)

At the Overlook Podcast, Steve Scher and I talk about binge-watching and, you know, the meaning of all that. Check it here.

Movie Diary 3/25/2015

Gett: The Trial of Viviane Ansalem (Ronit Elkabetz, Shlomi Elkabetz, 2014). The movie almost never leaves the courtroom, as an Israeli wife tries to convince a religious tribunal to let her divorce her husband. A skin-crawling movie, superbly acted (Ronit Elkabetz also plays the wife), and hewing to the cramped confines of the limited-perspective film. (full review 4/3)

Movie Diary 3/24/2015

Children of No Importance (Gerhard Lamprecht, 1926). A screening at the Hippodrome Festival of Silent Cinema, in Bo’ness – the Hippodrome is Scotland’s oldest surviving purpose-built cinema. A beautiful film about the plight of foster children, made with a neo-realist attention to detail but also with great craft. The image of a carousel is repeated, to beautiful effect, and the faces onscreen are remarkable.

Spring (Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead, 2014). It would be cool to see this movie without knowing what was going to be sprung upon you, but even knowing that it’s a slacker romance that becomes a horror picture won’t diminish some of the nuttiness. It’s not all there, but the idea is both amusing and sincere. (full review 3/27)

Movie Diary 3/23/2015

Serena (Susanne Bier, 2014). An apparently troubled production finally arrives on screens, with Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper in a Depression-era melodrama. One would like to embrace this kind of snakebit project as a misunderstood gem – but that will be difficult here. (full review 3/27)

It Follows Honest (This Week’s Movies)

itfollows

Maika Monroe, not yet aware that It Follows.

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

It Follows. “Nervously peering at dark corners of the screen.” (In case of Herald paywall, Seattle Weekly version here.)

An Honest Liar. “An unexpectedly fun (but sneakily forceful) portrait of a rationalist.” (Weekly link here.)

Over at the Overlook Podcast, Steve Scher and I continue our conversations with a look at An Honest Liar, and the value of skepticism. Listen here.

Kung Fu Wild Beloved (This Week’s Movies)

Henriette Confurius, Florian Stetter, Hannah Herzsprung: Beloved Sisters

Henriette Confurius, Florian Stetter, Hannah Herzsprung: Beloved Sisters

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

Wild Tales. “A lot of these segments rely on a twist, a technique that doesn’t quite disguise how in-your-face the lessons are.” (In case of Herald paywall, Seattle Weekly version here.)

Kung Fu Elliot. “There’s some creepy stuff going on in Halifax, folks.” (Weekly version here.)

Beloved Sisters. “Swerves recklessly between the arthouse and soap opera.” (Weekly version here.)

Check out the Overlook Podcast, as Steve Scher and I have another installment posting soon.

Movie Diary 3/11/2015

It Follows (David Robert Mitchell, 2014). Teens, sex, and horror – and the good news is, there’s a way to work a spooky variation on the familiar conventions of the genre. In particular, the movie acknowledges (from its eerie opening shot on) that screen space is a pregnant and dangerous element. (full review 3/20)

An Honest Liar (Tyler Measom, Justin Weinstein, 2014). Docu-bio of the Amazing Randi, the longtime magician whose second job as a debunker of supernatural claims makes him a hero in our faith-filled world. The movie’s no F for Fake, but it’s a fine portrait of a skeptic – and the footage of spoon-bending huckster Uri Geller is worth its weight in gold. (full review 3/20)

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